Walking on cobbles, all the time, like on the reg, daily-driver style, is tough. I’m not going to sugar coat it: you will twist & roll your ankle. And the soles of your shoes will wear out in curious ways. I’m talking pronation, supination, all the nations. Also, heels: don’t do it. And don’t even get me started on commuting no-handsies to the Starbucks next to the Hema in the main square on Ryder Hesjedal’s old bike, a Cannondale with a 300mm stem, past the frites stand and the Carfour Express, across like seven different varieties of cobbles, because A) you’re going to spill/splash your coffee, B) you might crash yourself out, and C) there are also train tracks to contend with.
And the canals.
THEY ARE SO PRETTY. BUT THEY SMELL. SO. BAD.
At night, during the day, when it’s windy, when it’s not, on sunny days and cloudy days too, the canals are marvelous. They kind of wind their way around town in a meandering fashion, reflecting the whole time no obvious design or purpose. But how did they get there? Is it like how many of the oldest roads in the world, were, when you trace them all the way back, like ALL THE WAY, game trails and hunting traces? Were the canals once creeks and streams, dug out since then? Also, now that we’re really getting down to the business of unpacking what amounts to a vast network of vestigial water roads, what kind of water is in there? Brackish? Freshwater? I can tell you from personal experience based on observation and a pretty serious campaign of canal-based running that the water is: